From: Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) has formally withdrawn support for the Chief Edwin Clark-led Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF).
MEND, which recently criticised PANDEF for its ultimatum to the Federal Government and recalled its representatives for consultations, said its “Decision to abandon PANDEF stems from the commercial and political motives of the leaders and most of the members who now see the platform as a means to bounce back financially and politically”
MEND, in a statement by Jomo Gbomo, said it has lost confidence in the leadership of Chief Clark and HRM Alfred Diete Spiff adding that “It is annoying working with pretenders who conspired to keep silent when Goodluck Jonathan wasted the opportunity of the region and was part of the conspiracy to suppress the voice of Henry Okah and MEND”
The group which reiterated that former President Goodluck Jonathan wasted six years of his Presidency as he could not develop the Niger Delta region said it would align with the Ijaw Youth Council ( IYC) and militant groups desirous of change in the region.
The statement read in part: “Chief Clark who had direct access to his “son” Goodluck Jonathan did not advise the former President to address the root issues and develop the region. Many sons and daughters who enriched themselves, including the current PANDEF leaders have no single viable industry built in the Niger Delta to show for it. The assets they have acquired are now forfeited to the region or the EFCC. Those ill-gotten assets cleverly hidden from the EFCC that we discover will be attacked and burnt to the ground.
The Niger Delta is today blessed with private, State, and Federal University presence; including a maritime academy in Oron, Akwa Ibom State which was established in the early 80s. One begins to wonder if the desperation and insistence of another similar university as a top priority by PANDEF is not just a ploy to cover-up an established financial crime.
MEND will in the interim align with the new Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), under Barrister Oweilaemi and will continue disdaining the old impostors claiming to be IYC. We will also cooperate with the Niger Delta People’s Congress (NDPC) and genuine militants desiring change such as the Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate, who have shown consistency in doing away with the old order.” (The Sun)